Napoleon Bonaparte Essay

914 words - 4 pages

This essay is about Napoleon Bonaparte, it talks about how he effected the frech economy and debates whether or not he can be considered a great french leader or a contemptuos one

Napoleon on Trial

Napoleon Bonapart was the first emperor of France and one of the greatest military leaders of all time. In his reign he conquered a large part of Europe and did much to modernize the nations that he ruled although it is obvious that he was a contemptuous leader and did much to jeopardize the well-being of his country. He can be seen as a selfish power hungry ruler that would risk the future of the country that he patronized. If he were to be put on trial he could be found guilty of betraying the ideals of the French Revolution, seeking his own personal glory at the expense of his country's good and causing chaos, bloodshed, and destruction throughout Europe.

Napoleon can be found guilty for the betrayal of the ideals of the French Revolution. In the coup d'etat of November 9-10, 1799, Napoleon and his colleagues seized power in France and established a new regime called the Consulate. Under the new constitution, Napoleon obtained dictatorial powers over France. Later on he altered the constitution to make himself the new emperor of France, thus the ideals of the French Revolution were betrayed. The betrayal came as he basically returned to the old monarchy system, which was protested in the Revolution. The people in France wanted to control their country's political leaders and make a majority rule. Napoleon, instead of meeting the wishes of the people forced himself upon them by altering the constitution. Napoleon also issued the Napoleonic Code as standard law, which limited the rights of his people. By doing this he did not allow the people to create their own laws but rather forced the laws upon them. He also simplified the judicial system in France making it easier for criminals to avoid being punishment for their crimes. Napoleon can be seen as a tyrant and authoritarian causing French citizens to be forced to live by his laws and also forcing many social reforms upon them.

Napoleon can be found guilty of attempting to gain personal glory at the expense of his country. Napoleon hired the best writers and artists to glorify his deeds and had elaborate parties to celebrate his rule. To pay for his elaborate parties and also for his works of writing and art he used taxpayer's money. This money could have been better used elsewhere in the French economy. By spending this money on such pointless things he robbed his own people of money that could have been used to better their quality of life. In 1812 Napoleon launched an invasion of Russia, which...

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